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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Programming Languages, Part A by University of Washington

1,390 ratings
404 reviews

About the Course

This course is an introduction to the basic concepts of programming languages, with a strong emphasis on functional programming. The course uses the languages ML, Racket, and Ruby as vehicles for teaching the concepts, but the real intent is to teach enough about how any language “fits together” to make you more effective programming in any language -- and in learning new ones. This course is neither particularly theoretical nor just about programming specifics -- it will give you a framework for understanding how to use language constructs effectively and how to design correct and elegant programs. By using different languages, you will learn to think more deeply than in terms of the particular syntax of one language. The emphasis on functional programming is essential for learning how to write robust, reusable, composable, and elegant programs. Indeed, many of the most important ideas in modern languages have their roots in functional programming. Get ready to learn a fresh and beautiful way to look at software and how to have fun building it. The course assumes some prior experience with programming, as described in more detail in the first module. The course is divided into three Coursera courses: Part A, Part B, and Part C. As explained in more detail in the first module of Part A, the overall course is a substantial amount of challenging material, so the three-part format provides two intermediate milestones and opportunities for a pause before continuing. The three parts are designed to be completed in order and set up to motivate you to continue through to the end of Part C. The three parts are not quite equal in length: Part A is almost as substantial as Part B and Part C combined. Week 1 of Part A has a more detailed list of topics for all three parts of the course, but it is expected that most course participants will not (yet!) know what all these topics mean....

Top reviews


Dec 03, 2016

I'm just a beginner for CS or SE classes, and find this course really concise and challenging. It opens a door for me to get deeper into programming language. No wonder it got so high average score.


Mar 22, 2017

Great course!\n\nI think this course has just the right balance of theoretical background, formal definitions, and actual examples to make "just right".\n\nThanks Dan, and everybody else involved!

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326 - 350 of 400 Reviews for Programming Languages, Part A

By Chris T

Jan 21, 2019

excellent course!

By Evgeny N

May 27, 2018

Very good course.

By 郑

Jan 10, 2018

very good course!

By Deleted A

Oct 14, 2017

fantastic course!

By Lyxn

Oct 05, 2017

make sense to me.

By Andrew W

Jul 12, 2017

Excellent course.

By Amalraj S V

Oct 07, 2016

Excellent Course.

By Abdelrhman A

Sep 03, 2020

very good course

By Luis G

Dec 08, 2019

beautiful course

By Wang G

Aug 13, 2019

Very good course

By zouzhitao

Dec 16, 2018

very good course

By Dingze W

Jul 03, 2018

fantastic course

By Tao X

Dec 28, 2017

Epic course ever

By Taegun P

May 26, 2020

Amazing course.

By Ashish S

Jul 21, 2017

Really great...

By pengwei

Feb 04, 2017

So far so good!

By Juspreet S

Oct 10, 2016

Amazing course!

By jzy

Nov 04, 2018


By peanuts6

Jan 20, 2018

useful for me

By Guy H

Aug 12, 2017

Great course.

By Troy

Jun 14, 2017

great course!

By 冯申翔

Jun 04, 2017


By Sorin J

Aug 21, 2020


By Yasha

Aug 05, 2020

great course

By Jin X

Sep 20, 2018

Dan is great